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How does the Volant Machete FB ski?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
HI,
I am thinking of buying a pair of machete fb in 175cm on Ebay.
I have heardsome reviewers mention that it was an extremely stable ski, but didn't do well in tight spot ie short turn and bumps and at slower speeds, it was also mentioned that is was not too forgiving.
I need some opinions on how this ski goes. If I buy them I was considering fixing the bindings 15-20mm forward to make it more responsive to shorter turns. Is that a good idea?
:
post #2 of 17
Tanman, hope your a F1 fan. Now back to skiing. I don't think you will find many people here that like Volants. The ones I have demoed seem to lack the feed back most of us like in a ski. IMO your better off with some other band of ski. Sorry if I sound negative, but that's my oponion.
post #3 of 17
It baffles me..why would anyone be surprised a *80 +/- wide ski would not be quick in the bumps? The ski will be very stable and very forgiving. Mount the sjes as they are supposed to be mounted, do not mount forward.



*Its not that I am Volant biased...although I am...but these reviewers sometimes just like to hear themselves talk. There isn't a 80mm wide ski that is "quick", its just not how they are designed.
post #4 of 17
The FB is 94mm under foot. I don't care wheree you mount the binding, this is not a bump ski or a short radius carver. :
post #5 of 17
Tanman, the people than design everything in this sport are engineers (and skiers). The mounting line is there for a reason. They take a lot of pride in what they do. If you feel the need to change their efforts, pick a different ski.
post #6 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by tanman
HI,
I am thinking of buying a pair of machete fb in 175cm on Ebay.
Umm...your buying a 175, right? You ought to be able to toss that thing around to your hearts content, even in tight places. (chutes, trees, etc.) It won't be great in bumps, but you'll survive. I imagine that some of the responses concerning it being difficult to handle could have been from folks on the 185-cm, big-boy length.

Although it seems those chasing Volants these days seem to be chasing the deals, luckily the FB is a nice off-piste ski, so if you intend to play there on it, it'll serve you just fine.
post #7 of 17

to answer the original question...

Tanman -

all the Machetes are REAL skis, regardless of what people write. they come from a generation of volants where the construction of the ski had already been changed to deal with the delamination problem (so don't worry about the FB's delamming on you).

secondly, no body in their right mind buys a FB for short turns and bumps. however, every volant i've skied did well in the bumps (relatively, of course, to the width of the ski). this is not a super forgiving ski. it can sit you on your butt quick if you let the ski get ahead of you. the machetes are all super stable. remember - the flex patterns were designed and approved by the craziest of all of us, Shane McConkey. he wanted to call this ski the fat bastard, but someone had already trademarked that name for a spoof movie. no sense of humor.

thirdly, don't mount the binding forward. it will shorten the way the ski turns because you will flex the entire back end of the ski off the snow in hard, short turns. this will result in entire loss of edge control, and then you won't be carving anymore. i mounted a pair of stiff, wide skis (explosivs) forward, and i wish i hadn't. they did ski great backwards that way, though...

if you think you'll need help turning the ski, get a Marker Piston or Glide binding. these bindings have "floating toes" that move the toe forward on the ski as the ski is flexed. the result is more forward pressure to really help initiate and keep a turn happening. i mount the piston version on all my skis, even the super fat ones, and they make a ton of difference in the way the ski skis.

with all this in mind, here's a grain of salt: i ski 180 explosivs and 190 gotamas almost everyday. i'm 5'9", 150 pounds. they both have super long radius sidecuts and i don't care - i make them turn short or just wave to speed control people when i go by them. get em, ski em, you'll love em

fat skis rock. put xc bindings on your old skinny ones.
post #8 of 17
oh yeah, the FB skis like a rock star. it is on the stiff side. holds an edge really good on hard snow. eats up chatter for mid morning snack. that's what happens with classic ski construction - wood core and steel!

fat skis still rock. use your old skinny ones to build a chair.
post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the replies? I'll take them into consideration.
post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 
post #11 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by unionbowler
Tanman -

with all this in mind, here's a grain of salt: i ski 180 explosivs and 190 gotamas almost everyday. i'm 5'9", 150 pounds. they both have super long radius sidecuts and i don't care - i make them turn short or just wave to speed control people when i go by them. get em, ski em, you'll love em

fat skis rock. put xc bindings on your old skinny ones.
Unionbowler,

Those are some of the most inspiring words I seen in a post in a good while. I agree that there is just something special about a nice fat Volkl...
post #12 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by tanman
HI,
I am thinking of buying a pair of machete fb in 175cm on Ebay.
I have heardsome reviewers mention that it was an extremely stable ski, but didn't do well in tight spot ie short turn and bumps and at slower speeds, it was also mentioned that is was not too forgiving.
I need some opinions on how this ski goes. If I buy them I was considering fixing the bindings 15-20mm forward to make it more responsive to shorter turns. Is that a good idea?
:
Hm, I've been asking myself the same thing. I have this ski, and haven't mounted it yet. There was a study done in 2002 that it's best to mount the bindings such that the center of gravity of the ski is directly under the ball of the foot. The title is: "Is the Campbell Balancer an Effective Tool for Determining Ski Binding Position?" Here is an excerpt from the conclusion:

"It was determined that for free skiing, the balanced ski binding position was preferred when compared to the factory stipulated position by 100% of the subjects. The inter and intra tester repeatability of the Campbell Balancer is good and is several centimeters less than the difference between the on-ski balanced and factory stipulated binding positions."

Basically, they used this tool and found that people (not just any people, but WC racers and expert skiers) preferred skiing on a binding position 2-3 centimeters forward from the factory stipulated center mark.

Any thoughts?
post #13 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlb
"It was determined that for free skiing, the balanced ski binding position was preferred when compared to the factory stipulated position by 100% of the subjects. The inter and intra tester repeatability of the Campbell Balancer is good and is several centimeters less than the difference between the on-ski balanced and factory stipulated binding positions."

Basically, they used this tool and found that people (not just any people, but WC racers and expert skiers) preferred skiing on a binding position 2-3 centimeters forward from the factory stipulated center mark.

Any thoughts?
I tried basically the same concept last year, on a pair of 188 cm. K2 AK Enemies. Mounted the ball of foot exactly over the midpoint of the ski's snow contact points. This caused the mount to end up 2 cm. ahead of the recommended position, and the skis just didn't feel right.

I moved them back to the recommended mark, and they skied much better.

However, I have several other pairs of skis, where the recommended mark puts the BOF on the enter of contact length, and they feel great.

Bottom line for me has been to mount as recommended for that particular ski.
post #14 of 17
Here's info on the Campbell Dynamic Ski Balancer
http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-P...&RS=PN/4694684

"It is well known that the bottom of a ski is cambered so that the ski engages a surface at a front contact point and a back contact point. The balance point of the ski is usually defined as a point one-half the distance between the front and back contact points. It is also known that, in turning a ski, pressure exerted forward of the balance point will increase the ski's turning effect, while pressure exerted behind the balance point towards the tail will tend to straighten the run of the skis. Pressure exerted neutrally and directly through the balance point tend to stabilize the ski's turning effect.

In order to assure that the force vector for the skier's body weight can be moved, with equal effort, to either side of the balance point, rather than either predominantly forward or rearward of the balance point, the ski must be balanced to the physiological characteristics of the skier as well as ski boot characteristics."

"The balance point of the ski is positioned directly over pivot point of plate 28. The position of the skier's boot on the top of the ski is then adjusted forwardly or rearwardly in small increments until the ski tips can be raised and lowered with equal ease when flexing. In FIG. 4, the broken outline view of the boot designated 50 diagrammatically represents the balance point for a skier having backward flex, while the broken line outline 52 represents the position of a boot which is arrived at for a skier having neutral flex"


Ken
post #15 of 17

Schmounting Moreward, Schmackward...

whatever all these studies say, what did volant mark on the ski as the mounting point? regardless of studies, i bet volant got the mounting point right when they marked it themselves. just because the park rats are mounting forward does not mean that regular skiers need to start doing the same. having skied a big mountain ski with a forward-mounted binding, i can tell you that it does make the ski drive better in deep snow (the tip dives, harder to stay on top of the snow), it does not make it easier to stay on top of the ski at high speeds because there isn't as much ski in front of you to absorb impact from chunked snow (so you get back to absorb stuff) and the like, and if you're a powerful skier you'll lift the tail of the ski off the snow every time you push hard on the ski for a short turn. for a good middle ground, look at my binding recommendation as posted near the beginning of this thread. tests don't hold up to seat of the pants experiences.

at the risk of more theoretical study finding, consider the flex of the ski in relation to the mounting point. if you mount at a point that does not fully utilize the flex, or a point that does not work optimally (sp?) IN COORDINATION with the flex pattern of the ski, that ther ski jess plain ain't gonna feel so right, uncle elias hemingway-hootenay!
post #16 of 17
Thread Starter 
I'd like to know then what is the diffence with these new Railflex bindings and atomic do it with the Neox series, where you can actually move the whole binding forward or backward by 15-20mm. I know you can change the setup easily with these bindings and the other way with normal bindings you just have to re drill some new hole. Is that correct?
post #17 of 17
tanman, you're right on. i don't know how the railflex works, but the atomic is adjustable forward and back a little bit without re-drilling. with other bindings you have to redrill. if your FBs have that Volant Riser Plate, then you can drill to heart's content without messing up the core. the atomic binding is not a superior product and you may end up with a binding that has to be warrantied because it doesn't even pass an initial DIN inspection. this will take time, and you may not want to wait.

i am firmly standing by my belief that you don't need to mount these forward. view my last post for reasons why. i mounted my first super fat forward and i came to not enjoy it for what the ski was intended. better to mount normal and get used to the ski than to mount wierd and then want to change it later.
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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › How does the Volant Machete FB ski?